The Dendrocracy of Fruit and thorn ([personal profile] sithjawa) wrote in [personal profile] azurelunatic 2017-03-22 01:17 am (UTC)

I have tried timing things to that level of detail but it doesn't work for me - it gets to the Too Many Things, I Am Overwhelmed level. I can divide the timing into 3 categories: Before leaving the house, Between the house and the car, and After getting in the car. I'd say that on average, there is an unexpected up to 20 minute delay in "Before leaving the house" about 1/3 of the time, and in "Between the house and car" about 1/3 of the time. The rest of delays must, by process of elimination, be occurring after getting in the car. Now, the thing that is puzzling about this is that I usually budget more than 20 minutes extra, and sometimes the drive is 5 minutes long with no traffic spots. Occasionally, that's due to I didn't realize I was out of gas (my car goes very rapidly from just under 1/2 tank to empty).

It's worth noting that if the maximum expected delay occurs at all steps, I need 80 minutes of *extra* time for a 5 minute drive (meaning I should give myself at least 95 minutes, but I suspect I usually only give myself 45 minutes from expected time-to-leave-house because getting somewhere that's 5 minutes away 80 minutes early would be catastrophic), and 1:45 extra time for a 30 minute drive (meaning I should give myself at least 2:25 with expected time to leave the house, but I suspect I usually only give myself 1:00, because I don't *actually* want to spend 2 hours in a coffee shop on the other end).

I think what it boils down to is that the variance due to small things has reached unacceptable levels ("Pippin stole my keys", "Did I eat today?", "Now I have panicked and cannot move", "SUDDEN EXHAUSTION SPIKE!", "Pippin dashed out door and I have to chase her", "horse blocking gate", "Landlady has URGENT THING TO TELL ME for 20 minutes", "landlady changed how gate has opened and I cannot figure out how to open it", "knees no longer function but I have to get down this hill somehow", "wait I had half a tank when I left the house and now I have no gas", "now we are going 5mph", "exit is blocked for construction", "I had a half tank of gas but after an hour of stop and go I'm out", "now I desperately have to pee because it's taken me 2 hours to get 1/2 hour from the house," "Google Street View lied to me," "wait but where do I park", "is this really the address this is a porn studio", etc.) and taking the average doesn't work because of high variance-of-which-variances-will-occur (e.g. it won't usually be around half of them, and some of them have a tendency to snowball, like "because you had to do so many last minute things in a rush on the way out the house you're exhausted and your legs don't work, and this means you missed your traffic window and now there's an accident on the route you planned, which now means you are out of gas from the stop-and-go and desperately need to pee, and now you are late, frantic, and exhausted so you are missing exits left and right and cannot figure out obvious things like that it is the place NEXT DOOR TO the porn studio").

I think what I need to do (and this will probably even work, for the things that are 1/2 hour or more away) is plan to locate a quiet coffee shop and decompress for 1/2 hour at the far end. Probably locate the coffee shop in advance. Then, add an average of half the likely delay time. That means if I'm right, things will be about right, if I'm early I can relax for a bit longer, and if I'm late I'll be 10 minutes late instead of 40, which is a much more acceptable degree of lateness.

Occasionally, I'm an hour more late when I left the house on time, there was no unusual traffic, I didn't stop anywhere, and I don't recall any delays between the house and the car. That's always a bit Mysteeeeeeeeeeerious.

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